Activision Blizzard, in the process of being acquired by Microsoft, sees its sales of consoles and PCs fall

Activision Blizzard, the American video game publisher in the process of being acquired by Microsoft, recorded plummeting revenues and profits in the second quarter, but better than expected by Wall Street in the context of the economic crisis. The group of Santa Monica (California) achieved 1.6 billion dollars in turnover, down 28% over one year. This is the third quarter in a row that its revenues have declined, and the company said in a press release that this trend will continue during the second half of the year. Its net profit came in at $280 million, a fraction of the $876 million in the second quarter of 2021.

Its sales halved on console and PC, but rose slightly on mobile, by 5%, to $831 million, thanks in particular to Candy Crush. Activision Blizzard mentions that players have spent less time on Call of Duty, one of its successful franchises. The company hopes that the release of a new installment in October will rekindle interest in the shooter. These results left the market unmoved, as analysts expected weaker earnings. “Despite a difficult economic environment, and while so many companies announce a freeze on hiring and layoffs, our development teams have grown by 25% over one year”, welcomed Bobby Kotick, the boss of the company, quoted in the press release. He recalled recent acquisitions of Proletariat, a studio, and Peltarion, a company specializing in artificial intelligence and automated machine learning.

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Accusations of discrimination and harassment

Activision Blizzard has been in the headlines regularly for a year, when a series of accusations of discrimination and harassment against management led to work stoppages Since then, employees have mobilized under different banners, including a union , a first for the company. Microsoft signed an agreement to buy the Californian publisher in January for $ 69 billion, the largest merger and acquisition transaction to have ever taken place in tech. The deal is expected to close by June 2023. In June, the computer giant told New Zealand competition regulators that Activision Blizzard had no “essential” video games, “which could cause concern” .

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